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Closed IACC Meeting Now Open To the Public

Public_invitedBy Kelli Ann Davis

We were informed this week by NIMH Director Tom Insel that an important Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee's (IACC) Implementation Workgroup meeting will be open to the public this Friday, August 8th  by phone 888-455-2920; access code 3857872 or via the web HERE.

During the last IACC meeting on July 15, it was announced that the meeting for the Implementation Working Group would take place in private and the Federal Register entry from last Thursday, July 31st states that the meeting will be “closed to the public” with “attendance limited to invited participants.” Here's the body copy of the letter:

[Federal Register: July 31, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 148)]
[Page 44756]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



National Institutes of Health

National Institute of Mental Health; Notice of Workgroup Meeting

    Notice is hereby given of a meeting of the Strategic Planning
Implementation Workgroup organized by the Interagency Autism
Coordinating Committee (IACC).
The workgroup meeting will be closed to the public with attendance
limited to invited participants.
The purpose of the workgroup meeting
is to discuss future granting opportunities and budgetary requirements
for the IACC Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Research. The workgroup recommendations will be forwarded to the IACC
for consideration and discussion at its next meeting on November 21,

    Name of Committee: Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee
    Type of meeting: Strategic Planning Implementation Workgroup.
    Date: August 8, 2008.
    Time: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. EDT.
    Agenda: Review of budgetary requirements and funding
opportunities for the IACC Strategic Plan for ASD Research.
    Place: National Institutes of Health, Neuroscience Center, 6001
Executive Boulevard, Room 8233, Bethesda, MD.
    Contact Person: Azik Schwechter, PhD., Office of Autism Research
Coordination, Office of the Director, National Institute of Mental
Health, NIH, 6001 Executive Boulevard, NSC, Room 8203a, Bethesda, MD
20892-9669, 301-443-7163,

    Information about the IACC is available on the Web site: http://

    Dated: July 24, 2008.
Jennifer Spaeth,
Director, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
[FR Doc. E8-17513 Filed 7-30-08; 8:45 am]

Since that time, the decision to open the meeting to the public was made and we encourage individuals to participate.

The purpose of the workgroup meeting is to discuss future granting opportunities and budgetary requirements for the IACC Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Research and is comprised of the following members:

• National Institutes of Health
• Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
• Autism Speaks
• Department of Defense
• The Simons Foundation
• Autism Research Institute
• Autism Consortium
• Organization for Autism Research
• Health Resources and Services Administration
• Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
• Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center
• Department of Education Staff

In addition, we received the following letter from Dr. Tom Insel of NIMH (CLICK HERE) in response to our request for inclusion on the Implementation Workgroup.  We will continue to work with the appropriate individuals to ensure that our voice is heard in this important process and we will keep you updated on any progress.

Kelli Ann Davis is the DC Political Liaison for Generation Rescue.


Kelli Ann Davis

"...they need to include the organizations out there advocating for parents and affected children."

Anne, you're right. The list needs to include others like GR, SafeMinds, NAA, Thoughtful House -- just to name a few.

But *this* is far from over -- in fact, it's just starting to get interesting.

Bottom Line: GR is working on a couple of fronts to ensure that a transparent and *open* process is maintained throughout the duration of the Strategic Plan and that our voices are an intregral part of the mix.

Anne Dachel

Seeing only Autism Speaks among the members of the Strategic Planning Implementation Workgroup members is a definite deficit.
If the IACC wants to have any recognition and credibility in the autism community, they need to include the organizations out there advocating for parents and affected children. It may look like health officials are seriously addressing the autism crisis, but the public's not even going to notice.
Anne Dachel
Media editor


Thanks, Kelli, for submitting this. I posted the first paragraph and the link to your article on our Minnesota biomed listserv. When one lives hundreds or thousands of miles away, it's great to have the option of listening remotely.

Kelli Ann Davis


In-person attendance at the meeting will be limited due to space available at the Neuroscience Center, Conference Room A, 6001 Executive Boulevard, Rockville, MD 20892

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